Doctor Accused of Female Genital Mutilation At Taxpayer Funded Hospital
A doctor has been charged with Female Genital Mutilation at a National Health Service Hospital. Dr Dhanoun Dharmasena is accused of carrying out the mutilation whilst another man, Hasan Mohammed, is alleged to have aided and abetted the crime.
The alleged crime took place at Whittington Hospital, in North London. The hospital is owned and operated by the National Health Service, meaning Dr Dharmasena would have been in receipt of a taxpayer funded salary at the time of the alleged offenses.
The announcement was made by Alison Saunders, the Director of Public Prosecutions, she said: “The CPS was asked to consider evidence in relation to this allegation of female genital mutilation by the Metropolitan Police Service after it was alleged that following a patient giving birth in November 2012, a doctor at the Whittington Hospital, in London, repaired FGM that had previously been performed on the patient, allegedly carrying out FGM himself.
“Having carefully considered all the available evidence, I have determined there is sufficient evidence and it would be in the public interest to prosecute Dr Dhanoun Dharmasena for an offence contrary to S1 (1) of the Female Genital Mutilation Act.
“I have also determined that Hasan Mohamed should face one charge of intentionally encouraging an offence of FGM, contrary to section 44(1) of the Serious Crime Act and a second charge of aiding, abetting, counselling or procuring Dr Dharmasena to commit an offence contrary to S1 (1) of the Female Genital Mutilation Act.
“Dr Dhamasena and Hasan Mohamed will appear at Westminster Magistrates’ Court on 15 April. May I remind all those concerned that these individuals have a right to a fair trial and it is very important that there should be no reporting, commentary or sharing of information online which could in any way prejudice these proceedings.”
There are thought to be 60,000 victims of Female Genital Mutilation in Britain, but this is the first prosecution since the practice became illegal in 1985. Saunders said prosecutions in such cases are so rare because victims are unwilling to speak in open court.